The EU’s top diplomat Josep Borrell has admitted that the EU has spent €35 billion on Russian energy and only €1 billion on aid for Ukraine, since the beginning of the invasion on February 24.
While €1 billion may seem like a lot, it is the amount the EU is paying to Vladimir Putin every day for the energy he provides the continent with, said Borrell.
“Since the start of the war, we’ve given him €35 billion, compared to the €1 billion we’ve given Ukraine to arm itself. Zelenskyy needs us to tell him less often that he is a hero and give him more weapons to fight,” Borrell told the European Parliament on Wednesday.
“That’s what Ukrainians expect from us and that’s what we’re doing, and we must do it faster - putting pressure on Russia and arming Ukraine.”
EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell says the EU has given €35bn to Vladimir Putin in energy payments since the start of the war, compared to €1bn given to Ukraine in arms and weapons.— Jennifer Rankin (@JenniferMerode) April 6, 2022
Energy dependencyEuropean importers pay €775 million for Russian oil and natural gas each day. Last year, the total amounted to over €99 million - money that has been credited with funding the Kremlin’s war machine. Since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, Europe’s dependency on Russian oil, gas and coal has been of growing concern, both because of the economic support to the country and the leverage it gives Putin. There have been continuous calls for the end of dependency on Russian gas, particularly by Poland and the Baltic states, and Lithuania has been the first European country to close Russia’s gas tap entirely.
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